Showing posts from 2016

December's Numbers

10 books
(AVG Rating: 2.9 stars*)

3 graphic novels, 1 short story, 2 non-fiction, 3 DNFs, and 1 AWESOME cyberpunk.

This month got me back on the reading train (sort of) and hopefully will be a portent of things to come in 2017.
*The average rating was dragged all the way down by those three DNFs. It’s 4.14 without them.
Writing: 29,166-words in 22days
(AVG: 1,326-words/day)
4 projects + admin

I’d say I’m proud of my focus this month, but if you do the full count, 2/3rds of that count is from admin which is kind of the epitome of a lack of focus. Blog posts like this one, outlines and pitches, some of my business mail, any random bit of writing notes jotted down on my phone while grocery shopping… It’s all stuff I need to get done, but when I see that much orange on a spreadsheet with so little in the way of other writing, I do the scrunchy-face scowl at it.
I suppose I can feel proud of the editing I’ve gotten done. If you follow me on Instagram, you’ve no doubt seen the posts here an…

This Site Is Being Edited


November’s Numbers

Reading: 0 Books
Hey look at that, I finished no books this month. That feels like a first. It’s also a teensy bit of a lie. More accurately, I finished no NEW books. I did a lot of reading of things i’ve already read for fun and profit research. Those don’t count, however, so we’re stuck with that big, fat zero!
Writing: 78,180-words in 26 days (Avg 3007-words/day) 7 projects + admin
As you’ll notice, I front loaded this month quite a bit. With the exception of last year (which came about for specific reasons) December is always a difficult writing month for me. There is SO MUCH going on in other parts of my life that I’m easily distracted (more so than normal) and that reflects in my counts.
Also this month, I took a week off and did the full-time author thing wherein I shut myself away for 8 hours a day and focused on nothing but writing in that time (I realize there’s a lot more to being full-time, but as I’m not actually, I used it for my own nefarious purposes). I managed to pop out jus…

October's Numbers

Reading: 5 Books
(Avg GR Rating: 3.6)

A Fool For You | Shades of Milk and Honey | Inca Gold Hold Me | Something Wicked This Way Comes
This month’s reading started off with a book I was so disappointed in, I cancelled 2 preorders from its author. Who knows, maybe I’ll reorder them at some point, but it’s one of those things where I don’t feel like I can trust the author anymore and I have a feeling it’s going to take me a while to get over that. (This is a third strike, btw. There were two others that left me feeling iffy, but this one pushed me over that proverbial edge.)
After that, it was a book I’ve been meaning to read forever, a book I reread after 17 years, one I’ve been waiting ages for, and one that seemed fitting for Halloween.

I started a non-fiction work too, but didn’t manage to get through it this month.

Writing: 60,048-words in 23 days
(Avg 2,610-words/day)

The third full week of this month was the most consistent I’ve had all year. Unfortunately, that consistency didn’t start or e…

September’s Numbers

Reading: 2 books
(Avg GR Rating: 4.5)

An Indecent Proposal by Katee Robert|  Star Wars Aftermath by Chuck Wendig
This was another one of those months were I had to forcibly find the time to read. Between doing ALL THE THINGS in our new place and spending a week with friends I already ignored an hour each day to get my writing in… the month was not one that was conducive to getting much of anything done, if I’m honest.

Writing: 32,463-words in 24 days
(Avg 1352-words/day)

While this was possibly my most consistent month ever, the numbers were low each day. This marks my smallest monthly word count all year! I’ll have to do better next month. I surpassed the yearly totals for 2013 & 14 this summer, so I’m not very upset about the low numbers, I’m simply annoyed with the fact I didn’t reach my goal of 40k (which still would have been the smallest).

August Numbers/September Goals

In Real Life:
I am moving right now. Literally, as you read this, I am schlepping boxes… assuming you’re reading it the day it posts.

Anyway, that means I’ve spent most of the month doing a fun dance around boxes and with my brain half scattered around the room.

Reading: 13 books
(Avg GR Rating 3.53)

Hey look! I managed to get in my best number since February. This month’s reading tally consisted of:
8 Full Novels
2 Graphic Novels
2 Short Stories

Goal:4 books. Met.

Writing: 84,074-words in 30 days
(AVG 2,802-words/day)

This month was a little more consistent in daily word count than last month but definitely didn’t see any better focus. (10 projects is not any better than 11)
The dip in the middle of the month was brought to you by edits that I’m STILL not done with. The structural edit on that book went in a snap, so I should have known the full edit was going to be like pulling a snail’s teeth.
And I’m going to blame that edit for missing my w/c goal.
Goal: 90,000-words. Not Met.

Publishing Did I …

July Numbers/ August Goals

In Real Life: We found out in the middle of July that the place we’ve been trying to move into for a year is finally ours! Which is great… but it also means that there’s a lot of packing and nonsense going on that has the potential to mess up my writing mojo for the next three months. I’m going to spin this to the positive side (in my head) for now and hope I can keep momentum up otherwise.

Reading: 4 Books
(Avg GR Rating 3)

Technically a cheat, I met this month’s goal by reading 2 novellas right there at the end and a 2 DNFs earlier this month.
It’s always depressing when you think you might like a plot line only to find that it’s poorly written and you have to toss the book away. 
Goal: 3 Books. Met!

Writing: 87,175-words in 30 days
(AVG 2905-words/day)

Focus was not my friend this month, at least not at the end. I got those 87k words in (if we exclude the random admin stuff) writing on 11 different projects!
Several days this week, my work schedule had me up at 3 and in the office by 4:30. An…

June Numbers/July Goals

In Real Life:
June started off with a bang (or a bash?) Comicon was the 2nd through the 5th, and as with last year, it was just a ton of fun. Got to meet up with some friends I made last year, found a few authors who’s books have now landed in my TBR list, harassed my tattoo artist (right leg), went to a screening of a friend’s short film and just had a ton of fun.
And then, it got quiet.
Since we recently bought a car, we’ve gone on a spending hiatus. Honestly, I want to pay that sucker down as quickly as possible and refinance. It’s not like the expense is huge… I just don’t like bills in general, and the more I can lower them, the better. On top of that, it’s just been really nice to stay in, get work done in the evenings, snuggle my ewok and enjoy my husband’s company. (after 7 years, you’d think we’d be tired of each other (at least that’s what people keep telling me).
Since it gets so hot here from May through September, I’m looking forward to another few months of not going out in …

May Numbers/April Goals

In Real Life:
I had a SUPER minor surgery on my arm. They pulled out three chunks of run-away fatty tissue. The lipomas were in the exact same spot as one my mom had decades ago. Hers was removed by a dermatologist… mine was pulled out by a plastic surgeon. I am still chuckling about that. Aside from medical stuff (yay neurology follow up), we had an interesting month.
The dog had some teeth pulled. I’m not sure who was in more pain, her… or my wallet.

I got a new tattoo. Slowly filling up my right leg (emphasis on the slowly) Jason put a banjo on my shin, using my own as reference.

We bought a new car and promptly took it on a single day road trip. There were dirt roads, fire crews, and giant squirrels. Also, a few strange looks from people in off-road vehicles.

And, I found an app that makes my life SO much easier. It’s a productivity app that helps me remember the important daily tasks I tended to forget.
Reading: 6 books
(AVG GR Rating 2.66)

Three of the books were duds, and only one go…

April Numbers/May Goals

In Real Life: April was pretty tame in the real life department. I got new glasses, I spent a lot of time trying to remember what day of the week it was, and basically just forgetting ALL THE THINGS. 
Reading: 1 book (AVG GR Rating: 0)
So, this is kind of a cheat. The only book I logged on GoodReads this month was my own. And since I don't rate my books, the average is a big fat zero.
Writing: 89,937-words in 21 days (AVG 4,282-words/day)
This month I played with seven different projects. Most of my focus went into two main books and the others were writing to clear the cobwebs out of my head. 
I finished one draft, sent a different one off to beta readers, and made some good progress on two others.
Publishing: Iron Heinrich dropped last week. It's the 3rd in my Clockwork Fairytales series, and was tons of fun to write. 

Reading - 10 books.
As I'm cutting back on some other things, I plan to make time specifically for reading. Frankly, I miss it.

Writing - 65,000-words
I still …

Creating a Map of Your World: Part Four

We're at the end of this series, I hope you enjoyed it so far... but let's get to the end, because its about time, am I right?

Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4

When you're playing with a world that is just HUGE, you may need to embiggen bits and pieces of it to give a zoomed in map of a specific area.

If you can scan the full map in, awesome. If you can't, you can do it the way I did and use a picture of the big map. Then it's just a matter of cropping and resizing. et Voila!

Repeat one of the first steps
If you recall from part two, the easiest way (imo) to transfer your coast lines, etc to a fresh piece of paper is by making those lines prominent with a dark marker and then busting out your light table/pad.

Add in the Particulars
This is a step that is going to depend entirely on you. I myself have one map that requires the embiggenment because of the need for itty bitty details. So here, you use the rough outline from your big map to place the features o…

7 Careers You Should Consider Instead of Writing

Experimental Drug Test Subject – You like the stories that play out in your head? You are going to LOVE the side-effects of our newest acne treatment! Early tests show that our side effects include in-depth hallucinations. Want to talk to the most conscientious wall you’ve ever encountered? How about learning what it’s like to have the floor really be lava! Best part! It’s legal drug use! (Other side effects include: Explosive diarrhea, suicidal behavior, pica, an intense urge to insert non-metallic objects into… well, unfortunate places.)
This is obviously preferable to writing because you’ll get to explore the minds inside your head and have your memories altered!

IRS Auditor – No one likes the IRS (I mean, at best, we’re apathetic to them). Make your mark on the world by starting a career in a profession that is understaffed, over stressed and spends most of the year in a mad dash to keep up with the ever changing laws in their own workplace.
Chances are, you’re going to write a book…

Creating A Map Of Your World: Part 3

This is a four part series, so hop back and check last week’s if you haven’t already and come back for parts three and four!
Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | Part 4
Create Borders If you’re working on a large scale (creating a continent or a whole planet) you’ll want to create borders for your different countries, kingdoms, realms etc.

If you’re working with something with a historical vibe, your borders will usually follow some sort of geological formation, and they usually won’t be straight. Maps for “newer” civilizations will very likely have straight lines based on things like longitude and latitude, or walls/fences.

Ink Outline At this point, since you’ve got everything figured out place wise. It’s a good thing to set the lines with ink. I’ve used sharpies or G2 pens to do this most often. Fine-point felt pens are also a good option.

Rough Draft Geographical features This is a step you can skip. Sometimes, you just aren’t going to have any. Or they’re not important enough to the story to go i…